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>>> a day of reflection and hope. pope benedict xvi planning to meet with the cardinals this morning. good morning and welcome to a special edition of "early start," i'm zoraida sambolin. >> i'm john berman. is it 4:00 a.m. in the east. welcome to cnn's live coverage of the pope's last day on the throne of st. peter. >> just ten hours from now pope benedict xvi becomes pope emeritus. he's not riding off into the sunset or helicopter just yet. at 5:00 a.m. eastern, the pope meets with the cardinalss who will pick his replacement. over 100 of them are expected to be on hand and the pontiff will spend a minute or two with each and every one of them. >> that should be fascinating. then cardinal seodano will spea and the pope will make a few spontaneous remarks before leaving his residence one last time. >> this truly is a historic day, not only for a vatican that finds itself at a crossroads but for 1.2 billion catholics awaiting a new spiritual leader and new direction. cnn's chief international correspondent christiane amanpour is live from rome this morning. good morning
alert from have aed can city where pope benedict xvi is making his final public appearance before resigning. good morning. i am heather childers. >> i am patti ann browne. today is wednesday february 27th. moments ago the pope made his appearance. we are looking live at square. they bid him farewell before he officially resigns tomorrow. 50,000 people estimated to be in that square right now. they are watching the pope by giant television screen all along the main boulevard. >> 250,000 people there. as of 8:00 p.m. tomorrow 2:00 p.m. eastern time pope benedict xvi will officially step down. he shocked the world with the announcement earlier this month. the first pope in fact in 600 years to resign. he no longer has the mental or physical strength to leave the catholic church. his final blessing sunday he reacured faithful followers he is not abandoning the church and he will spend his final years in prayer. for more coverage of the pope's final public pier rance we go life to rome where amy kellogg is standing by in saint peters square. she joini us on the phone. >> i am where you
benedict will be staying at castel gandolfo. it's been a retreat for popes for several centuries now. a monastery in the vatican garden is being renovated as a permanent home for him it's a 8,600 square fight complex. renovations have been in the works since november and expected to be completed in the spring. his longtime housekeepers will join him. our special edition of "early start," the pope's last day continues right now. >> our special coverage continues right here on cnn. >>> history in the making. pope benedict xvi about to carry out the last chaj of his papacy meeting one by one with the cardinals who will choose his successor and he might be face-to-face with the next pope in just a few minutes on this last day on the throne of st. peter. good morning. welcome to this special edition of "early start." i'm john berman. >> and i'm zoraida sambolin. we'd like to welcome our viewers from around the world on cnn international. it's the top of the hour, thursday, february 28th. we are witnessing history in the making. no one alive has ever seen a sitting pope step down. >> it is
is pouring in from around the globe as the head of the catholic church pope benedict, plans to step down. the first time a pope has resigned in self new jersey. >> a gunman opening fire inside a courthouse in delware. his estranged wife may be among the dead. a manhunt for an ex-cop accused of targeting police and their families. now the los angeles police have offered a seven-figure reward to information leading to his capture. all ahead, unless breaking news changes everything, on "studio b." >> first from fox's 3:00, bombshell ai knowns. which the world has not seen since 1415. pope benedict xvi saying he is stepping down. a move that took even his closest advisers by surprise and sets the stage for a new era in the catholic church and its bun billion catholics around the world. the 85-year-old pontiff says he doesn't have the strength to continue his duties in the church and will step down at the opened the month. his -- some cardinals not understanding what he said. we're seeing the same reaction from catholics all over the world, including here in the united states, the new york ar
. >> reporter: pope benedict 16 says he will be quitting february 28, less than 8 years into his papacy. he said his strength has deteriorated the last couple months and he noted a lack of strength to fulfill his mission. the senior sa senior advisor sae noticed the pope slowing down. we watched pope john paul ii suffer through the last few years of his papacy. maybe he wanted to avoid that. the former cardinal joseph ratzinger was touched by the charges of child abuse in the catholic church. bill: what happens next on the dates that are aren't? >> reporter: he's leaving february 28, 8:00 p.m. local time in rome. that leaves that very important vacancy and sets up a conclave of cardinals. vatican says by mid-march at the latest. vatican says we should have a new pope by esther sunday march 31. pope benedict will not take part in the conclave. usually a conclave happens after a pope dies. 1415 was the last time a pope quit in office. who is the next pope? he could come from developing areas of the world. it guarantees a lot of drama and a lot of black or white smoke coming from the roof is sistin
some even made the pope laugh as he reached out to them. and in just a couple hours, benedict will depart the vatican for the last time as pope. he will take off from the helipad just behind the st. peter's basilica there. and vatican television cameras will follow the journey, live, robin. >> what history you're witnessing, george. you're going to be there all morning long, live. >>> and here, with josh, sam, bianna in for lara. we have a full morning here in new york as well. we are going to bring you the latest encouraging headlines for your wallet. the dow surging near record highs. bianna's going to bring us that. >>> and how about this? the hairstylist at war over a fortune. the co-workers said they bought the ticket as a group. one of them claimed the whole prize for herself. and that would never happen here. >> mostly never. >> full morning ahead. >>> of course, let's go back, now, to george in rome. george? >> and it is just a glorious day here, robin. sunny, warm. almost spring-like. those cardinals that the pope met with this morning have already begun their informa
that pope benedict will resign on february 28th. the vatican confirming this information. he made a statement in latin during a small event saying that he does not have the strength anymore. the vatican did not offer any more explanation but once again this breaking news out of vatican city that pope benedict will resign as of february 28th. at the live desk, angie goff, news 4. >>> thank you, angie. president obama will honor a hero from the war in afghanistan. he'll award this man the medal of honor. he and his fellow soldiers battled hundreds of taliban fighters for more than 12 hours in 2009. eight americans died. romesha will be the only third living member to receive the medal of honor. >>> authorities in california are preparing for another day of searching for a suspected killer. police in los angeles are offering $1 million for information on christopher dorner, an ex-police officer accused of murdering three people. officers surrounding a home improvement store yesterday after someone reported seeing dorner there. investigators believe he's targeting other lapd officers
. >>> we do have breaking news this morning. shocking news, really. pope benedict xvi isresigning. a spokesman will not reveal way. fatigue and possibly declining health over the past year, but, again, no reason has been given. he became pope in 2005. you will remember, he had been joseph rat singer, cardinal, a major figure at the vatican for years before he became pope benedict. german born. been pope for nearly eight years. nearly eight years and this is just a major, major bit of news this morning. coming out of the vatican, again, cnn confirming the pope will step down on february 28th, which is just a little over two weeks from today. >> and no clear reason. we're trying to get more details to share those with you. this is shocking. this is shocking, absolutely shocking. we'll continue to watch the developments for you, folks. 6:00. the painstaking cleanup getting under way after a violent tornado ripped through mississippi tearing apart homes, businesses and even causing damage to a university campus. a storm chaser occasi e er -- l. capture these images. this is 100 miles
." gayle king is off. pope benedict is resigning in just a few hours. he's stepping down with promises to obey his successor. >> the pope met once last time with the college of cardinals one of those men will be the next leader of 1.2 billion roman catholics. allen pizzey is in vatican city to begin our coverage of the pope benedict's farewell. good morning. >> reporter: good morning. by the time evening begins to fall over rome benedict will be looking down at the vatican from a helicopter. three hours later he will no longer be pope and the politicking to find the new one can begin in earnest. in one of his final acts inside the vatican, pope benedict said good-bye to the cardinals. 67 of whole he had elevated to their position as the prince of the church. addressing what he called the future pope among you, benedict programs ed promised his unconditional reverence and obedience, among those making the list although a long shot is u.s. cardinal timothy dolan. in an interview cardinal dolan reflected on what kind of man will emerge as pope. >> all the other things
and makes us new." just ahead, benedict's health, his replacement, and what's next for the catholic church. "newsroom" starts now. >>> good morning. thank you so much for joining me. i'm carol costello. we begin with a bombshell greeting 1 billion catholics around the world. their spiritual leader, pope benedict xvi stepping down at the end of the month. we're bringing you all the angles of this developing story. joining me now for this hour's special coverage, chris cuomo, he's in new york. >> good morning, carol. great to joining here. >>> shocking news because this simply hasn't been done. it's been almost 600 years since a pope resigned. it was gregory xii. it was to end the civil war. the question becomes why is pope benedict doing this now? we're going to get reaction first because no one saw this coming, certainly in this country. let's start off our coverage with deb feyerick in st. patrick's cathedral in new york city, the center of the american catholic tradition here. deb, what are you hearing this morning? what a shocker. >> reporter: it's fascinating because the resignation to
for something the church has not experienced since the middle ages, pope benedict going through the final motions before stepping down as leader of the catholic church. here he is earlier this morning appearing before an assembly of the world's cardinals. the pope met with each of them individually for just a minute or two. and it will now be up to many of these men to choose his successor. it's an almost unprecedented challenge to an ancient religion grappling with the turmoil and scandal that's dogged benedict's reign. >> translator: during eight years we have lived with faith, marvelous moments in the history of the church and also times when the world is covered by dark clouds. >> there is no time frame for electing the next pope, but here's how benedict's leadership will end, next hour the pope leaves the vatican his home and will fly to his summer residence at castell gandolfo, at 2:00 eastern his reign ends and the catholic church faces its challenges without an official leader. we're following all the latest on this story of intrigue and uncertainty. senior international correspon
>>> breaking news we have been telling you about. pope benedict xvi resigning february 28th. he is citing ill health. and uncertainty what that ill health will be. we're trying to get more details. unprecedented. >> hasn't happened in 600 years. so many questions. so much now that needs to happen with electing the new pope. we'll bring you the information coming up on "starting point" a few seconds from now. that's "early start." i'm john berman. >> i'm sfwlor azoraida sambolin. "starting point" with soledad o'brien starts right now. >>> we begin with breaking news. pope benedict xvi resigning. age and fatigue are the reasons behind his resignation. here is what the statement reads in part "both strength of mind and body are necessary. strength which in the last few months has deteriorated in me to the extent that i have had to recognize my incapacity to adequately fulfill the ministry entrusted to me." this tweet came from the pope's account 23 hours ago. we must trust in the mitty power of god's mercy. we are all sinners, but his grace transforms us and makes us new. this woul
to ruling for life. pope benedict spent his last night in the papal vatican as the clock ticks down to his historic resignation. he'll step down after meeting with cardinals around the world and saying one last good-bye to followers. he gave an emotional farewell to 150,000 people in st. peters square yesterday. >> it did mean a lot, and to see the affection of the people the appreciation of the crowd, it was -- it was touching. >> reporter: later today the pope will take a ten-minute helicopter ride to castel gandolfo, the pope's summer retreat on the outskirts of rome. >> he'll spend a couple months there until there's a new pope and things are ready. he'll be basically spending a life of prayer in a convent on the vatican grounds. >> reporter: most of the 115 cardinals who will elect pope benedict's successor are already here in rome and speculation is spreading fast about who will replace him. >> i think it's going to be from africa or latin america. >> what matters most is that it's something who can dwight the church into the future. >> reporter: pope benedict
in modern times think resignation is acceptable or not. pope benedict said, in fact, made it very clear that being able to resign was acceptable and made this part of the statement released from the vatican, both strength of mind and body is necessary, and lots of questions, of course. we know the date he would be stepping down, which would be february 28th. many questions about why now? mep notice that the pope is much more frail in recent months, and the question would be unbelie unbelievably unusual. let's go to nic robertson joining us by phone. nic, lots of questions. nic live in london this morning. a bit of a stunner. was there any indication that this resignation was coming? >> absolutely none whatsoever, and the last few months, the pope started a twitter account, not what you expect the pope to do when he would say his pope is deteriorating. the pope has looked deep into his conscience, this is a personal and profound decision that he has made with god in light of the responsibilities he has. and the other thing we heard from the papal spokesperson, which is interesting, becau
, breaking news. pope benedict is abdicating, something a pope has not done in over 700 years of the the vatican saying this has nothing to do with outside pressures. [ speaking foreign language ] >> as you hear there, the pope speaking in latin to a meeting of vatican cardinals saying he will step down effective as the leader of the world's -- the 85-year-old pontiff saying his strength is no longer adequate. this news took fearly everyone by surprise, including the archbishop of new york, cardinal dolan. >> i'm as startled as the rest of you and anxious to find out exactly what's going on. >>> other reactions italy's prime minister saying he's greatly shaken by the unexpected news. >>> and british prime minister david cameron said he will be missed as a spiritual leader for millions. >>> and from angela merkel -- he had to make a difficult decision. just some of the reaction that's coming in today. joining mess is rome bureau chief claudio lavagna, and george weigel from washington. claudio, i want to start with you. we have part of the pope's statement. in it he said that b
hopes there will be someone new by the end of march. >> pope benedict will go to a summer retreat after he resigns and then he will move to a monostair where he will dedicate the remainder of his life to prayer. >>> 80 million americans call themselves catholic, but their numbers have been dwindling. some were proud of his decision, others were furious that he didn't do more about child sex abuse by priest. bruce, what did you find? >> among survivors of child sex abuse, there is a sense that pope benedict could have done far more, but among many of the faithful, there is a pride in pope benedict and he remains really quite popular, even though he succeeded the wildly popular, john paul. >> it's very startling. unprepared for. >> cardinal whirl was with the pope in october and had no sign that the pontiff was struggling with his duty. >> he was in full possession. >> part of the conclave that will select the next pope. and he says he will be looking for continuity with the conservative teachings of benedict and john paul. >> there's a basic doctrine that is bedrock or catholic fai
catholics are holding their breath. the stunning news that pope benedict is resigning at the end of the month is a game-changer. after he resigns, the vatican says benedict will live in a monastery in vatican city. meanwhile, the process to elect his successor is already underway. we have this report from vatican city. >> reporter: pope benedict xvi is about to make history. the 85-year-old leader of the catholic church is resigning at the end of the month. he's the first pope to do so in 600 years. the pope's announcement came as a surprise to all but his closest confidantes. he said because of his age and deteriorating health, "i have had to recognize my incapacity to fulfill the ministry entrusted to me." church leaders were shocked and saddened. >> like watching your own dad get old. and admit that he's not up to all the duties of being the head of a family involves. >> reporter: benedict xvi will remain pope until 8:00 p.m. on february 28. shortly after that, the college of cardinals will gather in the sistine chapel to elect the new pope. benedict's suc
benedict xvi says he'll resign at the end of this month after only eight years as leader of the world's 1 billion roman catholics. he says it's because of his age and his health. and now the question being asked around the world, who will be the next pope? we're watching what's going on. we have several correspondents in rome. pope benedict's papacy has been marked by serious controversies, especially the sex abuse scandal and his prior role as the church's lead investigator personally handling every single case that made its way to the vatican. cnn's brian todd is working this part of the story for us. we're going to go to rome in just a few moments, but tell us what's going on. >> reporter: wolf, here at the basilica of the national shrine of the immaculate conception they were shocked as anyone. this is the spot where it was one the most talked about moments of his visit to the united states almost five years ago. the place where he addressed one of the biggest controversies of his tenure and there was certainly no shortage of those during his papacy. the scrutiny began before he even
this was coming? >> reporter: we possibly benedict xvi even hinted at it himself, he said if he felt his strength and his body wasn't up to speed to comply with the duties that were -- that are expected of a pontiff, and very heavy duties like traveling around, attending ceremonies, working nonstop. at 85, that's tiring for everybody, for any man his age, let alone a pontiff and the pope and leader of 1 billion catholics around the world, but nobody really believed that would happen or nobody believed that would happen before at least next year, because this, maybe i remind you, is the year of the faith. so that came as a surprise to everybody, as you heard card natural dolan doesn't know about it. certainly he is not the only one, because the spokesperson for the vatican even said he was shocked. he didn't see it coming, and so didn't his closest aides. >> as we know, when benedict was named as pope, he was one of the oldest popes to take over that job. george, let me talk to you about the fact that we are hearing all the different reactions coming in now just from house speaker john boehner, sa
a church even benedict admits is damaged by division. what would you like to see out of the next pope? >> i would like to see them make some serious changes. >> reporter: pope benedict will leave the vatican on a helicopter for his retreat outside of rome. he says he'll remove himself entirely from the public eye, dedicating the rest of his life to prayer and meditation. nick schifrin, abc news, rome. >> thank you, nick. stay with abc news on this historic day at the vatican. abc's george stephanopoulos will lead our live coverage today as the pope retires. you can find background on this remarkable transition at any time at abcnews.com. >>> well, the u.s. has reportedly embarked in its deepest involvement in syria since the start of the conflict. "the new york times" reports that the u.s. is training opposition rebels and today, secretary of state john kerry is expected to extend another helping hand. here's abc's martha raddatz. >> reporter: this would be the first time the u.s. has given aid to the military side of the opposition forces. i'm told it could be anything from communications
station from viewers like you. thank you. >> brown: the papacy of benedict the sixteenth officially ended today as he became the first pontiff in modern times to resign. on his last day, he spoke with the cardinals who will now turn to choosing his successor, amid continuing scandals and tensions within the vatican and wider church. we begin with our coverage with this report from james mates of "independent television news." >> reporter: looking a little frail, weary almost under the burdens of a tumultuous eight years in the holy see, pope benedict met his cardinals for a final time. in the magnificent surroundings of the vatican's clementine room, he thanked them and recognized that one of those now applauding will soon be in his place. "among you," he said, "there is the future pope to whom already today and i promise my unconditional reverence and obedience." he said a personal farewell to each cardinal, among them peter turksen of ghana who many believe may be the first black pope in more than a thousand years. but pope benedict's speech yesterday shows hints of trouble within the v
. >> ultimately responsibility of love for the church. >> pope benedict was a great pope and he followed in some big shoes and i think he did a beautiful job. >> but the announcement a shock to many. and now the catholic church must find its next leader. >> maybe they need somebody younger. a breath of fresh air. >> maybe it will be a chance for the church to regenerate. might ultimately be a good thing. >> bill: tonight, the possible frontrunners for the job and what we now know about the pope's decision to resign but we begin with today's stunning announcement that the pope is stepping down. i'm bill hemmer in tonight for shepard smith. the news reportedly came as a shock even to many at the vatican. after nearly 8 years on the job, pope benedict xvi will resign at the end of this month. his final day february 28th. the pope released a statement which reads in part that the governor the church quote both strength of mind and body are necessary strength which in the last few months have deteriorated in me to the extent that i have had to recognize my incapacity to adequately fulfill the ministr
. >> -- and all that matters. >> a new report says that benedict's hearing has deteriorated and he's got blind in the left eye. >> the conclave may start earlier. >> could you be the next nominee? >> that enters the world of fantasy. >> -- on "cbs this morning." >> the first lawsuit from a passenger aboard the carnival cruise ship. >> finally one of those vacations that will be remembered as his idea. >>> welcome to "cbs this morning." the white house is under fire after a draft of its immigration plan leaked over the weekend. >> republicans are accusing the administration of meddling in bipartisan plans to score political points. bill plante is at the white house. good morning. >> reporter: good morning, norah, good morning, charlie. white house officials say what they really want is for the senators from both sides to write a new law to reform immigration. they denied that they're trying to politicize the process. president obama's newly pointed chief of staff said sunday that the white house is working on a plan of its own to deal with the 11 million undocument
of the world's most famous dog show, but first, new revelations about the pope. learn more about benedict's medical history as the vatican prepares to choose his successor. this is the "cbs morning news." and now hot pink toes. seems tough for a tough dog like duke. but when it has anything to do with gwen, he's putty in her hands. for a love this strong duke's family only feeds him iams. compared to other leading brands it has 50% more animal protein... ...to help keep his body as strong as a love that can endure anything... even every fashion trend. iams. keep love strong. [ nyquil bottle ] you know i relieve coughs sneezing, fevers... [ tylenol bottle ] me too! and nasal congestion. [ tissue box ] he said nasal congestion. yeah...i heard him. [ female announcer ] tylenol® cold multi-symptom nighttime relieves nasal congestion. nyquil® cold and flu doesn't. >>> well, this is one of the toughest jobs in new orleans, getting partiers off the street at the end of mardi gras. at midnight police tried to clear bourbon street but the crowd stepped aside briefly, and
for son tiff kit of pope benedict xvi. then around 2:00 he will catch a flight to rome where he will take part in selecting the next pope. pope benedict held his final sunday blessing this morning. he will only have one scheduled appearance before he retires on thursday. this all comes as the italian media now reporting a whirlwind of controversy surrounding his historic resignation. >> reporter: pope benedict xvi praying with cardinals. outside that spiritual haven a storm is brewing. the vatican is lashing out at the italian media for a string of what they call quote defamatory false reports. >> it is deplorable as we draw closer to the time of the beginning of the conclave and the cardinal electors will be held in conscious and before god to freely indicate their choice that there be a wide spread distribution of often unverifiable or completely false news stories. >> reporter: italian newspapers have suggested a secret dossier prepared by the pope and three cardinals. the report lists a series of scandals involving sex, money, and power. and suggesting a shadowy gay lobby. the content
. catholic church officials say pope benedict xvi will resign on february 28th, just 17 days from today. at announcement is considered a huge surprise. so far, there is no cheer reason given for the pope's rest you go nation. the headline from the vatican just breaking, pope benedict xvi will resign at the end of the month. >>> senator lindsay graham says he will delay a confirmation vote for cluck hagel and john brennan until he gets more information about a deadly attack on the u.s. consulate in libya. the south carolina republican accused the white house of stone walling his request for more information. hagel is the president's pick to lead the pentagon. brennan is in line for lead the cia. >> i do believe if he had picked up the phone, called the libyan government, these folks could have gotten out of the airport to the annex and the last two guys may very well be alive and if he did call the libyan officials and they sort of blew him off, that will affect whether or not i would give foreign aid in the future to libya. but if he failed to call on behalf of those people under edge,
benedict xvi has announced his historic resignation. >> a pretty dramatic change. it means he'll go from wearing a robe all day to wearing a robe all day. >> "top gear" has shown a video of a helicopter racing a cobra with a disastrous ending. >> the end of the mardi gras season. >> i like it very much. >> all that -- >> the westminster dog show is back. >> keep mice from overrunning their mistresses' boudoirs. >> that's interesting. >> top ten questions on the application to become a swimsuit model. >> how does brent musburger describe you? >> and all that matters -- >> awarded the medal for courageous action. his son stole the show playing peek-a-boo. >> colin is not as shy as clint. >> on "cbs this morning." >> lightning struck the vatican just hours after pope benedict would be announ-- pope benedict announced his resignation. >> what will the pope do? he could become the most distinguished walmart greeter of all time. >>>, wi >>> welcome to "cbs this morning." nae north korea held its third nuclear test. >> president obama will in fact discuss the nuclear test during his state of th
the gunman worked at the plant. >>> human crowd at the vatican today to witness pope benedict xvi's final hours as head of the catholic church. it's a big couple of days. vinita nair joins us live from the vatican with more on the pope's sendoff and his retirement. good afternoon. >> reporter: good afternoon, it's a beautiful day here in rome. keep in mind, we're a lot of hours ahead for this general audience that wrapped up about three hours ago from where we are now but it was an unusual one in the sense that the pope traditionally takes this time to talk to tourists and followers about the catholic religion. but today he made it very personal aware that this was his last public audience. ♪ [ music ]♪ >> reporter: pope benedict rode through st. peter's square in his trademark popemobile for the last time. he kissed babies and waved to tens of thousands of people who gathered to see him. the 85-year-old delivered his final message after serving nearly 8 years as pontiff. pope benedict told the crowd he will keep the faithful in his prayers and has
chance to see benedict xvi in the pope mobile. one final chance to see him speak. >> this is such a monumental time. no pope has resigned, the way he has done. and it's something that we have to see. >> reporter: tomorrow, benedict will officially retire to quiet prayer and meditation. the beatification will be captured live by 26 cameras. spectators started lining up before sunrise. they're full of devotion. benedict made the catholic church deeply concerned by corruption, cronyism and scandal. one of his final private meetings with the so-called 007 cardinals, who reportedly wrote about gay priests and blackmail in a controversial dossier. los angeles cardinal mahoney is here, even though he resigned and is accused of sealing the crimes of pedophile priests. >> i don't know if he said there's all these scandals, i have to resign. i think the weight of the job on someone who is relatively frail and very old, you know, just took its toll. and it was time for him to go. >> reporter: benedict will live in this converted convent and become pope emeritus. he will give
this morning for pope benedict's final public audience. benedict steps down tomorrow. >> the pope acknowledged difficult times during his papacy but told his people he has great trust in the future of the church. allen pizzey is in st. peter's scare. allen, good morning. >> reporter: good morning. there are fierce concerns about whether or not the monostic life benedict is about to fade into will keep him from having influence on the next papacy. that's for tomorrow. today he was center stage. benedict made a stately arrival for his last general audience aboard a pope mobile perhaps taking advantage of the last time he will have use of one of the specially made vehicle. the crowd of st. ter's square was half the 200,000 the vatican predicted and catered for but the welcome was warm. the pope thanked the crowd as he put it "from the bottom of my heart," and told them he was fully aware of the seriousness and novelty of his decision to resign. cardinals were gathering to choose benedict's successor held places of honor and seemed moved by the occasion. the 115 cardinals eligi
>>> welcome back to "early start." in just a few hours, pope benedict xvi will fly off into retirement literally. he will be on a helicopter and assume the title pope emeritus. in his last words as pope, benedict xvi pledged his unconditional obedience to the future pope. >> coming up at 10:00 a.m., a cnn special anchored by erin burnett and chris cuomo in new york and kris ychristiane amanp rome. >> i want to say happy birthday to teddy and joseph, your 6-year-old twins. >> it's a big day back home. thanks for that. >> a big day in the berman household. that is it for "early start." >> "starting buoyapoint with so o'brian" starts right now. >>> welcome, everybody. our starting point this morning, the pope's final day as head of the catholic church. in just about seven hours the office of the pope will be empty when benedict xvi is officially in retirement. this morning he blessed the cardinals who will pick his successor. >> translator: may he bless all of you in the name of the father and the son and the holy spirit. >> we're live in rome this morning with the histori
church are going to be looking for a new pontiff after pope benedict announced yesterday he is stepping down. the decision stunned even his closest aides even though the 85-year-old hinted in the past that his age and waning strength could force him to resign. he was elected in 2005 and will stay on until february 28th. his plan to meet for that secret enclave to select a new leader. we have a report from vatican city. >> reporter: the day after the shocking announcement that he will resign on february 28th, more details are emerging about his decision. the vatican's own newspaper said that this decision was taken at least a year ago after his trip to cuba and mexico in march 2012. that's when the pontiff realized he's just too old and too weak to perform his duties as the holy father including, of course, long distance travel. while the speculation now is ripe whether there is any other reason behind his decision. in an interview in 2010 during the scandals that engulfed the vatican and the catholic church including the pedophilia scandal and later the butler scandal with him leaking d
insiders and catholics around the world. pope benedict xvi been said it's time for someone physically stronger to leave the cat like church. >> reporter: the contest making this stunning announcement at a meeting with his cardinals. >> and he plans to retire at the end of themont. >> i'm shocked as much as you. >> reporter: even though he's aware of the seriousness of stepping down, he doesn't have the strength to carry out his papal duties saying, quote, both strength and mind and body are necessary. strength, which in the last few months, did tireiated in me. >> i always admired him as a scholar, as a priest, as a holy man. and now my admiration is higher because his humility. >> reporter: he's 85 years old, the first german pope in hundreds of years. elected in 2005, he succeeded john paul ii. there have been recent concerns about his health and he's needed help walking, but a vatican spokesperson insists he's not facing anything grave. the cardinals will elect his replacement and hope that can happen by holy week. >> they're looking for someone to preserve the court teachings of t
. >>> thank you, guys. a stunner in the catholic church. benedict is the first pope in 600 years to leave on his own will. so the question is, who's next? i'm brooke baldwin. the news is now. he says he wants revenge on the lapd. now as this ex-cop remains on the run, police announce they're looking into his firing. >>> plus, yet another navy s.e.a.l. breaks his silence about the raid that killed osama bin laden. but this time, it's the guy who shot the world's most wanted terrorist. my panel weighs in. >>> and -- ♪ some nights i call >> they are arguably the hottest band in music right now. do you still feel like you're dreaming or has it hit you, your success? >> and you will hear my behind the scenes chat with grammy winners fun. [ lisa ] my name's lisa, and chantix helped me quit. i honestly loved smoking, and i honestly didn't think i would ever quit. [ male announcer ] along with support, chantix is proven to help people quit smoking. it reduces the urge to smoke. it put me at ease that you could smoke on the first week. [ male announcer ] some people had changes in behavior, thin
leaves the vatican today. jon: bill and martha, thank you. pope benedict the xvi officially resigning today. it's about three hours away. good morning i'm jon scott. jenna: hi, everybody i'm jenna lee live in our admonition's capitol today witnessing history right now along with you. we are glad that you're with us. the pontiff leading the vatican for the last time as pope today. he's about to fly by helicopter to cas castle began r-frplt he will bless the well wishers gathering there awaiting his arrival. the pope's retirement taking effect in a few hours. before leaving the vatican he delivered his tphaoeupbl greetings to the cardinals urging them to work in unity and promising unconditional reverence and obedience to his successor. all of this very new to everyone. the last time a pope resigned 1415, jon. when we say we are actually witnessing history, a history that few have experienced before, the facts all point to that. jon: nobody has ever seen, nobody alive now has seen what we are seeing now, the resignation of a pope. it is a historic day at the vatican and really for the o
the final brief appearance there. and the final end to the benedict papacy comes four hours from now when the doors of gandolfo close and they leave. let's go down to keir simmons covering it all for us. kear, good morning to you. >> reporter: hey, savannah, good morning, the saints looking down on the square have not seen a day like this in medieval times. in the papal palace, over my shoulder here, the pope, as you say, has been meeting were his cardinals, tells them, i'll be with you in prayer. dawn across rome. this city has seen more than 260 pontiffs, only two popes passed in the last thousand years have left like this. the cardinals, princes of the church, gathered this morning for a warm farewell to pope benedict. some cardinals wants to speak to him for as long as possible. pope benedict will resign just after sunset. this home, this beautiful summer palace, quiet after a frantzic few weeks. >> at 8:00 exactly, he will stop being pope, the swiss guards who stand guard outside the palace and he'll go. >> reporter: rough seas he admitted yesterday and now the task begins of choosin
the world. pope benedict xvi stepping down at the end of the month. he says because of his advanced age. he's no longer able to handle the demands of being pope. the last pope to resign was way back in 1415, i will have much more of what happens next. and what is ahead for the catholic church. >>> and former navy s.e.a.l. who reportedly fired the shot that killed osama bin laden, he says he has no pension, no medical insurance, according to an article in esquire magazine, the man known only as the soter packed a train to protect his family from al qaeda terrorists seeking revenge. i will talk with investigative reporter who talked to that navy s.e.a.l. in a few minutes. and the u.s. coast guard coming down to the rescue to help a cruise strip stranded in the gulf of mexico. more than 4200 passengers and crew all stuck on a carnival cruise line try ump that is getting as can you imagine a little funky, a little uncomfortable. a woman on board tells us that the toilets not working any more. a fire broke out on the ship yesterday, and was headed back to texas. that ship will be towed to the ne
catholics around the world are still adjusting to the knowledge to the announcement pope benedict will be stepping down and new leadership will follow. and today the man who says he lacks the strength to go on as leader of the church led his final public mass as pope. nbc's anne thompson with us tonight from the vatican. anne, good evening. >> reporter: good evening, brian. today we finally saw the man who is causing all the commotion here. in two public appearances, pope benedict looked every one of his 85 years, but his voice and his resolve are strong. ♪ pope benedict led a packed st. peter's basilica in a moving ash wednesday mass. reminding the faithful, they are made from dust and to dust they shall return. a message of humility, answered by an unusual demonstration of affection. a spontaneous, prolonged standing ovation for the retiring pontiff, at his final public mass. a sea of cell phones capturing the exit of a man praised today as a simple and humble worker. >> i have tears in my eyes. it's just so amazing to be here. >> reporter: the pope's weekly audience turned in
learn today that the outgoing pope benedict will be called -- what he will be called after he is pope and what life will be like for him, because afr all, remember, an abdicating pope is all new territory for the catholic church. nbc's anne thompson remains at the vatican for us tonight. anne, good evening. >> reporter: good evening, brian. they are already closing off the streets around st. peter's square in anticipation of the huge crowds for pope benedict's final audience tomorrow. the cardinals who will elect his successor have started to arrive, including controversial american cardinal roger mahoney, who is here despite calls for him to stay home because of his role in shielding sexually abusive priests in los angeles. these final days for benedict have been very difficult. he's seen a cardinal forced to resign, intense speculation over an internal investigation into leaked documents. but today the news was all about his new life. in retirement, he will be called pope emeritus. he will still wear white, just a simple cap and not the cape we're used to seeing. his red shoes will
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